A BILL before the Massachusetts Legislature seeks to force water fluoridation upon virtually every community in the state. The bill would deprive local boards of health and citizens of the right to choose or not choose fluoridation.

Fluoridation has been a controversial idea from its inception. People on both sides of the issue oppose this bill. Fundamentally, it attacks local control. If passed, this would disenfranchise communities which have chosen to avoid fluoridation, as well as those which may wish to reexamine the issue in the future.

The Environmental Working Group in Washington is petitioning the US government to add fluoridated water to its list of substances known or anticipated to cause cancer in humans “based on its ability to cause osteosarcoma in males less than 20 years of age.” This link to potential harm is not unique, and the potential benefit from fluoridation is quite small or nonexistent. Long-fluoridated Boston’s ongoing dental health crisis shows that fluoride in water is no panacea.

Tell your legislators that the forced fluoridation bill is exactly the opposite of what we need today. Our ability to stop fluoridation, unless government responds adequately to the growing array of potential threats, is vital.

John Chiros, Natick